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Monday, November 25, 2019

Folding Card Wallet Tutorial


Here is my tutorial for a folding card wallet, great for your business cards, or credit cards, and all those other cards that seem so essential to life! 

Apologies to metricated people, but because I use a quilting ruler for my measuring and cutting (and I highly recommend one for small sewing projects like this), it’s much easier for me to work in inches.






You will need:

    9 1/4″ x 5″ of outer fabric
    9 1/4″ x 5″ of inner fabric
    2 pieces of 2 3/8″ x 5″ inner fabric for small pocket
    2 pieces of 4 7/8″ x 5″ inner fabric for other pocket/flap
    2 pieces of 1 3/4″ x 5″ contrast fabric for pocket binding (or some 3/4″ bias binding if you prefer to use ready made)
    2 pieces of 8 1/2 x 4 1/4″ piece medium iron-on interfacing (I use this cotton woven interfacing – I really like how natural the finish is).
    2 pieces of 2″ x 5″ pieces of medium iron-on interfacing.
    1 press stud/snap fastener

Step 1: Iron one of the large pieces of interfacing on to the wrong side (WS) of the outer fabric, positioning it in the centre of the fabric, with a 3/8″ border all round, like this:


Step 2: Iron the other large piece of interfacing on to the WS of the inner fabric in the same way.

Step 3: Making the binding for the pockets by pressing in half lengthways:


Then fold the edges into the middle and press again:


Then fold along the middle and press again:


Step 4: Repeat this process for the 2nd piece of pocket binding.

Step 5: Put the 2 smaller pocket pieces WS together and slip the binding over the longer edge:


Machine stitch into position, making sure your binding is all nicely lined up, or you risk your stitches missing the binding on the back. If you want to make absolutely sure of this, tack the binding into place before you machine.


Step 6: Repeat step 5 with the 2 larger pocket pieces:



Step 7: Position the pockets on the inner piece of fabric as shown in the picture, then zig zag down the sides to hold them in place (stitch lines indicated by red lines). Make sure you stitch close to the edge and use a very short stitch length and width – I set mine to 1.5mm for both.


Step 8: Measure a line 2″ from the bound edge of the large pocket (indicated below with a red line) & sew (with a straight stitch) across from side to side – this line of stitching will form the divide between the pocket and the wallet flap.


Step 9: Now you’re ready to sew the inner and outer together.  Put the pieces right sides together and pin securely into place – if you are using a fabric with a pattern on the outside of the wallet, then make very sure that you have the fabric arranged so that your pattern will be the right way up on the flap!

Sew round edge with 3/8″  seam allowance (effectively around the edge of the interfacing), leaving a 2″ gap for turning (the red line on the photo shows what I mean). It is best to leave the turning gap at the flap end of the wallet – otherwise you end up with the bound pocket edges getting in the way.


Step 10: In order to strengthen the areas where you’re going to sew the press stud/snap fastener, iron one of the small pieces of interfacing on the WS of the outer fabric, 3/8″ from the edge, at the flap end of the wallet, as indicated here.


Step 11: Iron the other small piece of interfacing on the WS of the inner fabric, 3/8″ at the opposite end of the wallet (the small pocket end), as indicated here.


Step 12: At this stage I always turn the wallet through the turning hole to have a look before I trim the seams, just to make sure everything lines up and I haven’t made any major booboos. It’s so much more difficult to fix things once you’ve trimmed the seam allowance….

If you are happy with how it looks, turn the wallet back through, trim the seams to a scant 1/4″, and trim diagonally across the corners – being very careful not to cut through the stitching. Here’s the wallet all trimmed up and ready to go:


Step 13: After you’ve trimmed your seams, turn the wallet to the right side & press thoroughly, making sure you press the edges of the turning hole under. Then handstitch (I use a blind stitch or ladder stitch) to stitch the hole closed.

Step 14: Press briefly again, then top stitch round the edge of  the wallet.  Lengthen your stitch (I use a stitch length of 2.6mm) and make sure you have a nice sharp needle on your machine, and make sure that the outer fabric is uppermost in the machine.

Top stitching can be tricky, but take things slowly, especially when you’re going round the corners, and when you are sewing over the pocket edge bindings, where things get a bit bumpy, and you’ll be fine.

Step 15: Fold your wallet and press again, then decide where you want to have your press stud/snap fastener. I have sewn one in the middle, about 3/4″ down from the edge.  Sew the press stud on firmly, making sure the top and bottom meet properly!


Now fill with business cards, fold, and admire!


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